Limavady Courthouse to close

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Limavady Courthouse is to close, the north’s Justice Minister has confirmed today.

Following a consultation exercise the Minister David Ford has decided to close the Hearing Centres at Bangor, Larne, Limavady and Magherafelt but retain the Hearing Centre in Strabane.

“I have listened carefully to the points made by consultees and I recognise the convenience of having local court facilities. However, it remains the case that, in general, the Hearing Centres are among the smallest and least well equipped venues within the court estate,Mr Ford said.

“After much consideration I have concluded that Hearing Centres at Bangor, Larne, Limavady and Magherafelt should close. Larne Borough Council has offered its facilities for hearings. My officials are going to explore the viability of this proposal.

“I am satisfied that the level of accommodation and facilities available at Strabane are of a higher standard than the other Hearing Centres and that it should be retained. Strabane’s longer term future will be considered as part of a Departmental Estate Strategy.

Mr Ford added: “The closure of four of the Hearing Centres and the transfer of that business to larger court centres will deliver some modest savings but will, in general, afford court users, including victims and witnesses, a higher standard of accommodation and facilities.”